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Get Involved in Voluntary Mediation

By: Lynne Conner - Updated: 20 Nov 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Mediation Mediator Family Mediation

Volunteer as a mediator and learn the skills of bringing people together to resolve their problems and differences. A mediator doesn’t take sides but listens to people and encourages them to put across their point of view. Whether you are dealing with family breakdown or disputes between neighbours you can help people to reach a compromise and to improve their lives by finding a positive way out of a difficult situation. The rewards are high as you will be helping people in your community and you will also learn valuable skills to add to your CV and which can be used in a wide range of careers.

Who can Volunteer?

You will need to be calm, patient, flexible and a good listener. You must be non-judgemental, impartial and able to see both sides of an argument. You must be able to put your ego to one side and put the needs of others first.

Mediators need good communication skills and to get on with all kinds of people. They come from all walks of life and reflect the diversity of their local community. It is helpful to have relevant experience and a background in law, counselling, social work or teaching are all beneficial but not necessary. You must also be able to commit time, which usually amounts to several days a year. Cases are often heard during the day so you must be free then or able to arrange time off with your employer.

Because of the sensitive nature of the role you will undergo a selection process, and if chosen a Criminal Records Bureau/Disclosure Scotland background check will take place.

What Groups Need Mediation?

Mediators work with many different types of people within their community. Many mediators work with families going through separation or divorce. There is also a high demand for mediators to work with neighbours in dispute. There are also opportunities to resolve conflicts and reach dispute resolution between members of a community such as landlords and tenants or between people of diverse religions. Another specialised role is in mediating between young people and their families.

What is Involved?

Before you can begin working as a mediator specialised training will be given. This will cover topics such as health and safety, mediation and conflict management, creating trust, confidentiality, presentation skills and equal opportunities. You will also receive training in relevant legislation although mediators do not give clients legal advice.

Your role is to help to resolve differences between both parties and to aim for as positive an outcome as possible. You will usually work in pairs with a co-mediator to reduce the conflict in a situation. Above all you will be seen to be impartial and build a relationship with both parties.

When allocated a case you will initially visit both parties at home. To begin with you will see them separately and take time to identify the problems before moving on to a full meeting. For example with families you may consider such issues as finances, child residency, child contact, property and belongings.

Full meetings are held in a neutral venue and will take place over a period of time working towards a resolution. You will encourage both sides to communicate with each other, suggest possible solutions and help clients to explore all the available options. A key element of your role is to ensure that discussions stay fair and focused, and to reduce tensions and misunderstandings. You are always working towards the best possible outcome for everyone involved. With family disputes you may also spend time listening separately to children.

To help you perform the role you will receive ongoing support. You will liaise with staff and also perhaps with solicitors and courts. You keep detailed casework notes and discuss them with staff. This will also help you to identify when mediation may not be working or be enough and you need to refer a case on. There are also usually regular peer support meetings which you can attend. If you wish it is possible to go on to obtain a qualification in areas such as Family Mediation.

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[Add a Comment]
How can I become a voluntary mediator in Worcestershire. I have undergone mediation training. From Gill CreedS
Gill - 20-Nov-16 @ 8:55 AM
Tami - Your Question:
I have extensive experience in mediation (family and workplace) but do not have qualification. Can I volunteer with your organisation and possibly gain qualification in one of your training courses?

Our Response:
We do not employ volunteers, this is a just a website that give information.
CommunityHelpers - 17-Aug-16 @ 1:59 PM
I have extensive experience in mediation (family and workplace) but do not have qualification. Can I volunteer with your organisation and possibly gain qualification in one of your training courses?
Tami - 17-Aug-16 @ 12:31 AM
Hi, I have worked in commercial negotiation for the past 5 years, and would be very keen to explore voluntary training and courses in mediation. Please can you signpost me in the direction of appropriate organisations ideally in Durham/Newcastle? Many thanks!!
Espencer - 24-Jan-16 @ 2:31 PM
Hi, I have worked in commercial negotiation for the past 5 years and am keen to explore training and volunteering in mediation, specifically in the Durham/Newcastle area. Please can you signpost me in the direction of appropriate voluntary organisations? Many thanks.
ESpencer - 24-Jan-16 @ 2:25 PM
ESmit - Your Question:
Hi, I'm a workplace Mediator and HR professional but very interested in Family Mediation. I would love to volunteer for you as I work part time and have availability. How can I get in touch with you to discuss this? Many thanks

Our Response:
We do not have volunteer positions here, we simply offer advice to those who wish to do so. The easiest way to volunteer in this field to contact any local mediation services, the Citizen's Advice Bureau, the CVS etc
CommunityHelpers - 4-Jan-16 @ 2:38 PM
Hi, I'm a workplace Mediator and HR professional but very interested in Family Mediation. I would love to volunteer for you as I work part time and have availability. How can I get in touch with you to discuss this? Many thanks
ESmit - 4-Jan-16 @ 9:35 AM
Orlz - Your Question:
Hi Im looking to be get involved in voluntary mediation activities in Manchester. I have undergone mediation training already.Thanks

Our Response:
Try Manchester City Council's page for voluntary mediators
CommunityHelpers - 9-Oct-15 @ 11:52 AM
Hi Im looking to be get involved in voluntary mediation activities in Manchester. I have undergone mediation training already. Thanks
Orlz - 8-Oct-15 @ 8:01 PM
Woro.- Your Question:
Hi, I was wondering whether there were any trainings in mediation available (possibly free of charge) for volunteers with no previous certification in mediation. I am based in Reading and would be interested in any opportunity here in the south-east (including London).Many thanks!

Our Response:
Lots of organisations offer mediation training - not many offer free certification however. It is worth looking into the many options. Key in "mediation training uk" into a search engine...lots of useful results!
CommunityHelpers - 1-Oct-15 @ 12:16 PM
Hi, I was wondering whether there were any trainings in mediation available (possibly free of charge) for volunteers with no previous certification in mediation. I am based in Reading and would be interested in any opportunity here in the south-east (including London). Many thanks!
Woro. - 27-Sep-15 @ 1:36 PM
Hi, I am64 close to retirement and would like to train as a volunteer mediator. I am a trained counsellor and practiced part time for 10 years. My main proffession however is engineering
Paul - 19-Jul-15 @ 5:00 PM
I am currently studying for Diploma in Mediation and seeking volunteering opportunities either in East London or City of London, can you advise who I can contact have tried search engines without success
Trouble - 26-May-15 @ 7:32 PM
@Kadir Abdul. Try searching 'mediation volunteering' together with your town name in a search engine. You should get some useful results - contact individual organisations to find out whether voluntary work is available.
CommunityHelpers - 26-Jan-15 @ 12:47 PM
@chokki. Try:
Midlands Mediation Network
or
Wyre Forest Night Stop.
CommunityHelpers - 26-Jan-15 @ 12:34 PM
Hi, I am interested in Voluntary Community Mediation work to gain experience in Mediation, I have recently gained Certification in Mediation.
Kadir Abdul - 22-Jan-15 @ 8:14 PM
I have been a JP for twenty years inc ten years in the family court. I am considering volunteering in the Worcester area in the field of mediation. Can you advise me if there are any opportunities locally please.
Chokki - 22-Jan-15 @ 5:59 PM
@KRM - you could try contacting Mediation Buckinghamshire or Oxfordshire Family Mediation which has a volunteer ambassador scheme. There are also mediation services in many of the London boroughs so your most effective option would be to use a search engine and search "mediation volunteering in London"
CommunityHelpers - 21-Jan-15 @ 10:09 AM
I ama CMC accredited Civil and Commercial mediator who is looking to gain voluntary mediation experience in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire or London.
KRM - 17-Jan-15 @ 9:49 PM
@Annika. Sounds great - good luck with it.
CommunityHelpers - 12-Jan-15 @ 11:51 AM
Hi I am currently working as a Probation Service Officer, however would like to change careers. I currently have experience in counselling, coaching and mentoring and would like to get involved in some voluntary mediation work and eventually qualify. I would be willing to communte anywhere in the London areato attend training/ volunteer.
Annika - 9-Jan-15 @ 3:14 PM
Hello, I am interested in Voluntary Mediation work in Mediation. Some months ago, Igained Certification in Mediation at Regents University.
Benny - 17-Nov-14 @ 1:43 PM
@Chokki. Try the Worcerster Volunteer Centre on 01905 24741 or enquiries@worcestervolunteercentre.org.uk
CommunityHelpers - 6-Nov-14 @ 12:32 PM
I am interested in becoming a volunteer mediator.Can you advise me of any opportunities near Worcester?
Chokki - 5-Nov-14 @ 1:23 PM
please email me with contact details
Andrew - 17-Oct-14 @ 3:43 PM
I am a legal executive and costs lawyer, i would like to get involved with voluntary mediation schemes and learn of any appropriate available training with the view to greater involvement once i retire within the next two years
Jim - 20-Aug-14 @ 1:34 PM
I have a legal background and want some experience in mediation before becoming fully qualified. I live in the north west and can travel. Please can you send me some further details of your voluntary scheme, Many thanks
Sam - 11-Jun-14 @ 10:01 PM
I am a nurse and counsellor, have recently obtained accreditation as a facilitativemediator and would like to gain some mediation experience by volunteering. I currently live in derbyshire but am willing to travel. I am available in the day time and weekends. Trisha
Trisha - 14-Nov-13 @ 4:07 PM
Hi - I am trained as a workplace mediator and have 18 months experience, having completed 15 cases.I would love to develop my skills and to give some time to community mediation.I live in the South Cheshire area and am fairly mobile.I look forward to hearing from you.
hankelow - 11-Mar-13 @ 8:46 PM
Please can you provide me with any information and contact details for voluntary mediation work in and around Birmingham. I hope to be able to train as a mediator but would like to obtain some experience in the field first, thank you, Sue
Sue - 6-Feb-13 @ 8:47 AM
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